Monday, September 22, 2008

A Penny For Your Thoughts

OK, I can't give you a penny, but I would appreciate your thoughts!

Yesterday, while out doing the weekly shopping, an odd situation arose, directly in front of the egg display.

Mr. X and I were blocking a good half of the eggs with our cart and kids while I opened box after box, looking for a flawless, crack free, 18 pack. Keep in mind that Mr. X was at the helm of our shopping vessel, since he pushes it SO much more quickly and aggressively than I. While I was busy checking eggs, Mr. X was busy speaking with one of his MANY community contacts. I located a perfect pack and tried to move on to the next aisle, but apparently, Mr. X did not notice my absence and continued TALKING. So I come back to the cart and pretend not to care that it is SUNDAY, his only day off, and here he is talking SHOP, while he has the 6 other days of the week to do it, and why the heck doesn't he just get the darn guy's phone number and say he's going to call him later because it's SUNDAY, his only day off and he should really be paying attention to his wife and kids because this last week he spent 2 nights in a hotel on top of his 12-13 hour work day!!!! Anyhow, I'm pretending, he's talking when an employee of the store comes up next to us with a huge palette full of eggs and says "excuse me", very politely, to which I reply "Oh, I'm sorry!" and promptly move myself and my child OUT of the way. Mr. X just stands there, talking. At first I thought he either didn't hear or didn't see the guy, so I grabbed the cart handle and moved it back for him. Mr. X finishes talking, we continue shopping, and I think "that's the end of that".

About 5 minutes later, Mr. X says "I didn't move for a reason. I am the customer, I should not have to move for an employee, they should have to wait for me." Hmm, interesting, he's right, we are the customers. Now him not moving, even though he did hear the employee, makes sense. But, I'm still not sure. What if the employee is on a deadline? What if he'll get fired if he doesn't put the eggs out right now? But, then again...aren't we the customers? Is it appropriate for an employee to ask a customer to move? I'm conflicted.

What do you think?

P.S. I LOVE my husband, (I love you babe!) he is kind and giving, and all sorts of wonderful. We already had an open coversation about this yesterday, so I'm definitely not complaining about him behind his back. Besides, he reads my blog, so I wouldn't be the brightest crayon if I tried to secretly complain about my husband on a blog that he reads daily.

16 Helpful Hints:

Britt said...

I never thought of it that way, but now that he says it that way .. I agree with him. I think there should be a mutual respect, that if it's no problem to move and they are polite about it, I would move. But when it comes right down to it, I am the customer, and they should have to wait until I'm done.

Oh, and my husband is the same way with talking to people .. especially the phone! He cannot resist answering no matter what we are doing. Used to irritate the pants off me, and now I just tease him mercilessly ;o)

Signe said...

I think it's about mutual respect...if the grocer was polite, he had respect for your dh. If he had been rude, I think it would have been another story.
Besides, it was a phone call, not shopping. If he were looking at eggs, yes, he would have ever right to stand there as long as he wanted to and have the grocer wait.

Mrs. X said...

Yes, I completey agree, Signe. Good ananlysis.

Mark43 said...

Hold on ladies... I was talking to another CUSTOMER and it was brief. He saw me and had a update about his nephew joining. I was getting the phone number off him when the egg guy came up and said, "excuse me." I had every intention of moving I just could not be rude to my contact. Then my beautiful wife grabs the cart and moves the cart and myself away.

Could the egg guy wait a minute? I think so! I was not trying to be rude but if I had to pick who to "appear" rude to it would be the egg guy but it would not be intentional or directed.

p.s. I nodded at the egg guy in a nice gesture as we walked passed!

Mrs. X said...

UMMM...NO IT WAS NOT BRIEF! I could of walked around half of Walmart in the time it took you to talk to the guy about his nephew AND some other guy who he could not remember the name of!

Jennifer P. said...

first of all thank you for the visit to my blog---and you're a follower--hooray :)! I love your wise looking 1957-esque housewife look.

I had never thought of it like this before---but I am going to side with Mr. X. I think that's why I love certain stores more than others (stupid Wal Mart), because they stock their stores late at night and leave the daylight hours for the customers to shop without being chased around by the giant floor polisher, or trying to find their favorite breakfast cereal piled up on a palette.

Now I have a justifiable reason for being rude back to rude employees :).

Terie said...

I think we mostly agree on mutual respect being key here - if the grocer showed respect when he said "excuse me" then there's no reason not to move. They don't know the length of your conversation, they're just trying to put eggs on the shelf and move on to the next job.

If you are actually looking at the food you're blocking and sorting through then you don't have to move and he probably would not have asked you to move, but I wonder, what if it was another customer who said excuse me, would you have moved your chat to a less inconvenient location? Mutual respect is definitely key.

I don't like being rude to anyone who isn't directly rude to me and even those get a taste of sugar from me that keeps them wondering. I just can't give them the satisfaction of knowing they peeved me off :-)

Mark43- it was nice of you to give him a nice gesture later.

"The Queen in Residence" said...

I agree with him. You must have been at Walmart. You have to be rude to work there.

Ronnica said...

I take some offense at the last comment. I worked at Walmart for over 3 years and I'm (for the most part, as a disposition) not rude. Not saying that I haven't had my share of rude service (both at Walmart and other stores), but we shouldn't be quick to over-generalize. Oh, and insider information (based on Jennifer P.'s comment): Walmart has to stock during the day and night (though they do much more at night) because otherwise the SHELVES WILL BE BARE. Believe it or not, they actually would sell out of some items if they didn't restock the shelves during the day. They just sell that much!

Besides, you made it clear that the worker was very polite about it. I see nothing wrong with what they did. They politely asked you to move. If they had demanded it, that would be another thing entirely. They have the right to ask you to move, but if you don't, they don't have the right to MAKE you move. It's just common courtesy to move for someone if it's not particularly inconvenient for you, regardless of whether or not their job is to serve you (they aren't slaves!).

Michelle said...

I agree with the consensus of the group. Since you guys were just standing there talking, then it would be okay to move. But, if you were still inspecting the cartons of eggs, then the employee should wait (all day, if necessary) until you were done.

Oh, and don't get ME started on the husband-talks-work-on-his-one-day-off thing! I digress...

Mrs. X said...

Thank you all for your input, I think we can all agree that mutual respect is key, that I like buying eggs in bulk, AND I MOVED the cart! :)

Mark43 said...

Mrs. X is a bully!

"The Queen in Residence" said...

Okay now that I have read all the comments I agree. You were in the right and did give notice to the man that he was acknowledged. Also WOW on the beautiful wife comment.

Mrs. X said...

Yes, I am a bully. A beautiful, beautiful bully. :)

Sissy said...

I read your article with interest. I think my husband would probably have handled this situation the same way. One thing that I find is the sense of entitlement that business men who travel have. They are used to having things their own way on their own terms. I believe his attitude was rude. The worker was doing his job and anyone at my husband's place of employment would expect a polite request to be respected so that they could do their job as efficiently as possible. We have to remember to put others before ourselves - that includes everyone - grocery store workers just doing their jobs. Otherwise, it looks like "I am more important than you" and gives off a very arrogant attitude. I speak from experience.

Mrs. X said...

Sissy: I am confused, is your husband a grocery store worker or a business man?

I do not believe that customer service is what it used to be. I myself had a job in the service industry years ago and was ALWAYS careful to put the customer first. The only time I could of forseen myself asking a customer to move would be in a safety situation, otherwise THEY have the right of way. After all, aren't the customers what keeps a business in business?

 
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